4 Aug 2012

NZDF observers to complete Syrian deployments

6:12 am on 4 August 2012

New Zealand Defence Force staff acting as observers in Syria will complete their deployments, which will finish in about a fortnight.

Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully says in a statement that the resignation of Kofi Annan as the United Nations Peace Envoy to Syria, will not affect their mission.

He says the resignation reflects the difficulty in finding consensus within the UN Security Council on how to best resolve the Syria crisis.

New Zealand is calling on the Security Council to unite and meet its obligation towards addressing and reducing conflict in Syria.

A UN official says the main battle for the Syrian city of Aleppo is about to start.

Aleppo has been under siege from President Bashar al-Assad's forces since 20 July and military observers have predicted a prolonged battle for control of it.